Constitutional Affairs Committee

Press notice 24 of Session 2005-06
25 April 2006


The Constitutional Affairs Committee has decided to postpone taking oral evidence from certain witnesses in connection with its inquiry into Party funding to after the Whit break. This is as a result of advice from the police and the Crown Prosecution Service relating to the continuing police investigation into allegations connected with party funding.

The oral evidence sessions scheduled in May with Sir Hayden Phillips GCB and Sam Younger, Chairman of the Electoral Commission, will take place as planned.

Rt Hon Alan Beith MP, Chairman of the Constitutional Affairs Committee, said:

The Committee has consented to delay taking oral evidence from certain categories of witness as a result of a direct request from the Metropolitan Police, supported by the Crown Prosecution Service. The Committee will complete its inquiry into matters connected with party funding on the basis of evidence from a full range of witnesses, but we accept that it is desirable to delay taking evidence from some witnesses to avoid any possible complication of the continuing police inquiry.

1. The inquiry was launched on Thursday 23 March and oral evidence was taken on Wednesday 19 April from Rt Hon Lord Falconer of Thoroton, Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs and Lord Chancellor and Alex Allan, Permanent Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs. A transcript of the session is available on the Committee Website:
2. Further evidence sessions will be announced in due course
3. Committee Membership is as follows: Rt Hon Alan Beith MP (Chairman), James Brokenshire MP, David Howarth MP, Barbara Keeley MP, Mr Piara S Khabra MP, Jessica Morden MP, Julie Morgan MP, Mr Andrew Tyrie MP, Keith Vaz MP, Dr Alan Whitehead MP, Jeremy Wright MP